It was great to be back racing in the Total Quartz Ginetta GT5 Challenge at the weekend. We’ve had some great success at Donington in previous years and this was one no exception. A very last minute deal enabled us to be on the grid albeit with a twist – back in a Ginetta G20!
The pressure was really on. To come back into a competitive series, with no testing and the driver in an unknown car, and worse still the car had two Championship wins under it’s belt so it was clearly a winner. Would we still be quick enough after all those miles running on slick tyres in the G40′s?
Qualifying couldn’t have gone better if we tried. The two fastest laps that would determine our grid positions were set early on in the session and soon the yellow flags came out as the G40′s hurled themselves at the scenery. With 7 cars off and several badly damaged there were no further opportunities to post a quick lap. We had done it, pole position!
Race 1 saw Stuart make a great start but boxed in behind several of the midfield G40′s into turn 1. As a result the Academy Motorsport G20car of Mark Wania slotted in just in front and began the start of a race long battle. It was neck and neck until lap 5, with the G40 piloted by Kelvin Fletcher splitting the pair. In order to get back on terms with the leader Pearson made a move on Emmerdale actor Fletcher in to the Melbourne Loop and in doing so made contact with Wania and the pair spun. Rejoining in second position (again!) Pearson had his eyes firmly fixed on championship leader Matt Flowers in his privateer car. With one lap to go Pearson made the pass but Flowers put up a real fight and didn’t make it easy. Driver Stuart said “I think I made hard work of that win!”
Race 2 began with a safety car after the Reflex Racing prepared G40 of Luke Davenport was sent spinning into the gravel trap at the Old Hairpin on the opening lap. With neither driver losing or gaining on the restart, the two cars of Wania and Pearson were side by side again with no quarter asked or given. For 15 solid minutes not even the proverbial cigar paper could split the duo but who would come out on top as the two entered the Goddards chicane for the last time? Disaster struck as Wania lost control, clipped Pearson and the two spun. Rejoining 3rd and 4th respectively the pair crossed the line behind Flowers and Brian Murphy in the Orwin car.
Look out for footage on Motors TV and on the SPR YouTube channel in the next few weeks.